Welcome to my weekly feature where authors share about the hobbies, careers, or passions of their characters.
I’m pleased to introduce today’s guest, a good friend, and a wonderful writer, Pamela S. Thibodeaux.
Hello, my name is Melena Rhyker and I’m an Artist…..
For as long as I can remember I’ve loved to draw and paint and work with stained glass. Although I took a few art classes over the years, mostly leisure learning and have used my talent to gift others, I never thought of myself as an artist. You see, I married young and worked as an Administrative Assistant in an accounting firm most of my adult life. I even got my Accounting Degree courtesy of my boss. But when my husband died, I just couldn’t fathom living the rest of my life in that same old rut. Before he passed, the rut had meaning and purpose. After, my life was meaningless and empty.
My best friend Pat told me that if I didn’t change the status quo, I’d never make it out of the valley of the shadow of death. That’s what grief is you know. Anyway, I quit my job and decided to pursue my art, thinking that if I put as much energy and passion into that as I had my marriage, my and Jon’s life together and our family, I might be able to get by with the money I earned and what savings I had.
For a while at least.
I began writing art-related articles and selling a few old paintings and greeting cards online and that was encouraging but not enough to count as substantial income.
They say God works in mysterious ways and I can attest to this because an application for a grant to an artist’s retreat popped up in my email one day and I won! That retreat and a subsequent job working on the Crossed Penn ranch (where the retreat was held) opened my eyes to the possibilities that lay before me. Leaving home and family for a couple of months was not easy, but necessary for my mental, emotional, and spiritual wellbeing. Leaving Jon took a huge leap of faith, but it paid off. My art flourished and the ranch owners, Anne and Bill Penn, offered to host a show for me and manage my career. From that moment on, I was no longer an Accountant/wannabe artist, I was a gallery-worthy artist and well paid for doing what I love.
We all have gifts and talents the Lord has blessed us with. Find yours – albeit painting or writing, sewing or needlework, carpentry or dance – pursue it with passion and dedication and most of all, with love and let God take you and your career places you’ve never dreamed of.
My name is Melena Rhyker and I am an artist.
Blurb: After thirty years married to the man of her dreams, Melena Rhyker is devastated by her husband’s death. Relief comes in the form of an artist’s retreat at the Crossed Penn ranch in Utopia, TX. She rediscovers a forgotten dream as her artistic talent flourishes into that of a gallery-worthy artist. Will she have the courage to follow the path she was destined to travel?
Garrett Saunders has been on the run most of his life. Abused and abandoned as a child, he escapes the clutches of a past filled with pain and shame, and hides from his calling as a Native American healer. His years as a CIA agent aid in overcoming his childhood and honing his talent and skill as a fine art photographer.
Follow their journey as two people who come from totally different backgrounds, but share gifts of gigantic proportions, find meaning and purpose in the Texas Hill Country.
Excerpt: She went into the private studio tucked away in an alcove on the third floor of the lodge, surprised to find her work arranged in an attractive display. Direct light shone on some, muted on others.
Melena wandered around the room. Her gaze rested on each individual piece of art, amazed again at what God had seen fit to express through her.
Her easel stood in the center of the room. She made her way to the stool and sat. Her mind whirled with visions, yet she hesitated to put images to paper. She closed her eyes and heard the voice of her art instructor from years past.
“What do you see? What do you feel? Delve deeper.”
One word came to mind, echoed in her spirit. Serenity.
Melena rose, wandered around the room once more and gazed upon her creations with a new set of eyes.
The eyes of her spirit.
She tugged on frames, readjusted light, and rearranged pieces until her theme fell into place.
She placed a fresh canvas on the easel, filled her palette with color, mixed shades and, with soft strokes of the brush, painted.
My Heart Weeps is on sale for a limited time @ 99cents and FREE on Kindle Unlimited!
Purchase Link: https://bit.ly/MyHeartWeeps
Author bio: Award-winning author, Pamela S. Thibodeaux is the Co-Founder and a lifetime member of Bayou Writers Group in Lake Charles, Louisiana. Multi-published in romantic fiction as well as creative non-fiction, her writing has been tagged as, “Inspirational with an Edge!” ™ and reviewed as “steamier and grittier than the typical Christian novel without decreasing the message.” Sign up to receive Pam’s newsletter and get a FREE short story!
Website address: http://www.pamelathibodeaux.com
Face Book: http://facebook.com/pamelasthibodeaux
Twitter: http://twitter.com/psthib @psthib
Amazon Author Page: http://amzn.to/1jUVcdU
Pam is giving away 1 Ebook, 1 Autographed Print Book, 1 Audio Book, a $15 Amazon Gift Card, a 1-month Audible membership and a SURPRISE Giftpack to 6 lucky winners! (1 prize per person) Names will be collected throughout the tour which ends Sept. 30th. Winners will be notified, and prizes awarded by October 10th so be sure to leave your EMAIL Address!
Blog Tour Dates/Stops:
8/11 Gail Pallotta’s Peering Through Life’s Window
8/13 Liz Flaherty’ Word Wranglers Blog
8/15 Clare Revell’s The Word Can Wait Blog
8/18 Southern Writers Suite T Blog
8/18 Alina K Field’s Simply Romance Blog
8/20 Penelope Marzec’s Bookish Thoughts Blog
8/25 Jana Richards’ Romance Story Board Blog
8/27 Beverly Bateman’s BLOG
9/1 Valarie Goree’s Facebook Page
9/5 D. V. Stone’s Campfire Blog
9/9 Jacqueline Seewald’s BLOG
9/11 Linda Rondeau’s Snark & Sensibility Blog
9/14 Patricia Kioyno’s Four Foxes, One Hound Blog
9/18 Diane Burton’s BLOG
9/22 Alicia Dean’s BLOG
9/25 Jeny Hickman’s BLOG
9/30 Linda Nightingale’s Author…Musings Blog